A push is underway by federal safety regulators to redevelop baby loungers following a series of infant deaths related to the products.
The Consumer Product Safety Commission published a Nov. 8 report explaining that the loungers and other infant support cushions were connected to 79 deaths between 2010 and 2022. The report also cited 125 non-fatal reported incidents involving these products during this time.
An official cause of death reported by the medical examiner in the majority of the 79 reported deaths was asphyxia or probable asphyxia.
According to the CPSC report, more than 80% of the deaths involved babies three-months old and younger.
The report noted that these incidents involved the use of an infant support cushion placed in or on a sleep-related consumer product such as an adult bed, futon, crib, bassinet, play yard, or on a couch.
CPSC officials voted for changes to the baby loungers that could lower the risk of suffocation.
Image of recalled Yoocaa Baby Lounger in animal print. (Credit: Provided/U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission)
Under the proposed rule, baby loungers would need firm surfaces and an incline angle to prevent a dangerous positioning of a baby's head and neck on the surfaces of the loungers.
There would also be a side angle requirement to prevent the risk of an infant getting trapped between the sidewall and support surface of the lounger.
The CPSC will hold a 60-day public comment period to reevaluate the proposed changes for the loungers.
Officials called for the proposed safety changes after the CPSC issued lounger recalls related to injuries and deaths of infants.
Over 3 million Boppy Newborn Loungers were recalled in 2021 after eight infants died related to using the product. The CPSC noted that the infant deaths happened between December 2015 and June 2020.
CPSC officials again informed parents in June 2023 not to use Boppy Newborn Loungers after two more infants died after a recall of the products.
Months later, the agency recalled over 4,000 Yoocaa baby loungers in November 2023 due to a suffocation risk. The products were sold on Amazon, the CPSC noted in a release.
According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, babies should sleep on their backs alone on a crib, bassinet or portable play yard with a firm, flat mattress and a fitted sheet in their own sleep space.
Babies should avoid sleeping on a couch or armchair or in a seating device, like a swing or car safety seat (except while riding in the car).
The organization also recommends parents to keep loose blankets, pillows, stuffed toys, bumpers and other soft items out of the sleep space.
This story was reported from Washington, D.C.